YOUR VOICE COUNTS
NEW LEGISLATION PROPOSED TO INCREASE AMOUNT A TENANT PAYS TO PROCURE AN APARTMENT
Legislation for the 2015 session in NH includes a proposal to require a first month's rent, a last month's rent, plus a security deposit to get an apartment in NH. Now a first month's rent plus a security deposit is the most a landlord can ask for. Since Nashua apartments' median rent is $1,100/month, this would mean a family/individual would have to come up with $3,300 to move in. This would be a hardship for those who get and give assistance to low-income persons to get a place. Massachusetts has these requirements, but has a higher minimum wage and substantially more services for low-income residents, plus many more protections for tenants.
HOMELESS MEMORIAL SERVICE IN DECEMBER
The Nashua community remembered homeless and formerly homeless persons who died in the past year on Monday, Dec. 22 in front of Main St Methodist Church. There were 15 people from Nashua - highest in many years, and these are the people we know about.
COMMUNITY CONVERSATION AT NSK&S
On Monday, December 15, 2014, at 5:30pm, NSKS hosted "Community Conversations" sponsored by Citizens Alliance, Granite State Organizing Project, and other advocacy groups. Twenty-five people, including 4 of our clients, shared comments on the future of our NH community, especially for low-income persons who struggle with finding stable housing and other basics. We hope to host more of these in the future.
BENEFITS INCREASE PROPOSED
Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, the program that helps single parents with children with income, employment training, and social services support may increase its financing by 20% if this proposal makes it through the budget process in NH.
This would mean that a parent with one child would see an increase of $47.60 a month and a parent with 2 children would see $61.40 more. Since the current funding means that these families cannot afford ANY apartment in Nashua with their TANF grant only, this is a big improvement. We see many of these families in our shelters, others are "doubled up" with family, friends, or in the worst case scenario, strangers.
We hope that these long-awaited increases make it through the budget process and enable more children and their single parent to have stable homes. Please contact your legislator (when elections determine who that will be) to support this change.
Find out the names of your newly or re-elected state representatives and senators and their contact information at http://www.nh.gov/
and ask their support for votes on funding homelessness programs and policies that increase wages and job opportunities in NH. Thanks!
PLACE AT THE TABLE AVAILABLE FOR SHOWING/DISCUSSION
If anyone would like to host a showing of a film, A Place at the Table, which tells the powerful stories of 3 Americans experiencing hunger, please contact me, Eileen Brady, at Eileen@nsks.org or 603 889-7770.
EMAIL LIST FOR QUICK ACTION:
If you would like to be on an email list for quick action on legislative issues, please send your email to email@example.com
. I promise there will not be an avalanche of posts!
STILL OUT OF REACH
Massachusetts has more people in shelters and motels than ever before at a great cost to the state, largely because of the unaffordability of apartments/houses for those in the bottom 30-40% of income. As rents rise there, they rise in southern NH as well.
Unless the Federal budget begins to include more funds for various kinds of affordable housing, more cuts will need to happen in NH in programs set up to help those with the lowest incomes opportunities for stable places to live. Please contact your NH congressional delegation to support funds for subsidized homes.
Medicaid Expansion Passes -20,000 signups So Far (Oct, 2014)
The NH Senate and House both passed expanded Medicaid, calling it the NH Health Protection program and acting in a bipartisan manner.
People we see at the soup kitchen benefit from this expansion. Signups began July 1, 2014.
Thank your reps!
LOCAL CROP WALK COLLECTED $36,000+ SO FAR
Many thanks to all those who did the Crop Walk, which benefits NSK&S, among others. It was on Oct 26 - many local congregations participated- would your group be interested in participating next year? Please contact me at Eileen@nsks.org, 889-7770.
HOW TO FIND YOUR REPRESENTATIVE
NSK&S on FACEBOOK
Become a friend of Nashua Soup Kitchen & Shelter and/or Nashua Soup Kitchen & Shelter Advocacy Page on Facebook if you are on that social network, and encourage others to do so. It is another way to bring the concerns of some of the people in Nashua who don't get heard in most networks to a broader audience. Thanks!
SOME WEBSITES TO CHECK OUT
With much of federal legislation stalled or sidetracked, it is important to get the word out to our representatives in Congress that we are concerned about bills that affect homeless and hungry people in our neighborhood, a number that is growing daily due to job loss, increasing costs, and unexpected health care challenges.
SOME WAYS TO BE INVOLVED
Contact our current congressional delegation to support issues important to eradicate homelessness and hunger, to promote safe, affordable housing and enough food for all.
ATTEND A MEETING OF THE NASHUA CONTINUUM OF CARE OR THE ENDING HOMELESSNESS COMMITTEE
The Ending Homelessness Committee welcomes citizen involvement - contact Eileen@NSKS.org for more information. Come to one meeting or lots of meetings.
The Continuum of Care meets on the first Wednesday of each month (except for July) at 8 am, usually at Nashua City Hall. Usually there are 35-45 people representing agencies, businesses, faith communities, students, organizations, as well as present and/or formerly homeless people. The Ending Homelessness group meets at 9am, immediately following the Continuum of Care meeting.